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Archives for November 2018

Julia Banks (Lib-Chisholm) Turns Independent

The member for the Victorian electorate of Chisholm, Julia Banks, has announced that she is resigning from the Liberal Party to sit as an independent in the House of Representatives, plunging the Morrison government further into minority status.

Banks had previously announced that she would not contest Chisholm again as a Liberal. She has suggested she might run in Chisholm, or elsewhere, as an independent.

Banks won Chisholm at the 2016 federal election. It was the only seat the Liberal Party captured from the Labor Party. The ALP’s Anna Burke had held the seat since 1998.

A redistribution means the redrawn Chisholm will be based around the suburbs of Box Hill, Blackburn, Mount Waverley and Glen Waverley. It has a notional Liberal majority of 3.4%. Last Saturday’s Victorian state election saw the seats of Box Hill and Mount Waverley lost by the Liberal Party to the ALP with swings of 7.5% and 6.0% respectively. The Blackburn-based electorate of Forest Hill, whilst retained by the Liberal Party, registered a 3.0% swing to the ALP.

Bank’s announcement in the House came at the beginning of the day’s proceedings. It coincided with a press conference by Prime Minister Scott Morrison. The coalition government now holds just 74 of the 150 seats in the House, having already lost former PM Malcolm Turnbull’s seat of Wentworth to Dr Kerryn Phelps, also an independent. There are now seven crossbenchers in the House. The ALP has 69 seats.

  • Listen to Banks’ statement (5m)
  • Watch Bank’s statement (5m)

Hansard transcript of statement by Julia Banks, former Liberal member for Chisholm.

Ms BANKS (Chisholm) (12:01): Mr Speaker, on indulgence, may I make a personal statement?

The SPEAKER: Yes, the member for Chisholm may proceed.

Ms BANKS: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Following the leadership coup in August, I announced my decision that I will not recontest the seat of Chisholm at the next election as a member of the Liberal Party. I’ve always put the people before the party. After being a Labor held seat for 18 years, the people of Chisholm elected me as I promised them that I would be their representative under the leadership of the former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and former deputy leader and foreign minister Julie Bishop—both visionary, inspiring leaders of sensible, centrist, liberal values with integrity and intellect, and with significant support from my local community, and across Australia, as leaders of our nation. [Read more…]


Dr Kerryn Phelps (Ind-Wentworth) – Maiden Speech

Dr Kerryn Phelps has given her first speech to the House of Representatives, after being sworn in this morning.

Phelps

Dr Phelps, 60, is the independent member for Wentworth. She replaces the former prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, who resigned on August 31 after he was overthrown by the Liberal Party. Phelps won the October 20 by-election, securing a two-candidate vote of 51.22%, off a primary vote of 29.19%. The Liberal Party primary vote declined by 19.18% to 43.08%. The two-party-preferred vote was 60.75% to the Liberals and 39.25% to the ALP, a swing of 7.0%.

Phelps is the first woman to represent Wentworth since Federation in 1901. For its entire history, the seat had been represented by the non-Labor parties in their various incarnations.

The first woman to be elected President of the Australian Medical Association, Phelps has operated a medical practice in the Wentworth electorate for the last twenty years. Elected to the Sydney City Council, on the Clover Moore ticket, in 2017, she served for a year as Deputy Lord Mayor.

Phelps has been a prominent campaigner for the cause of same-sex marriage and gender equality. She supported the Yes case in the 2017 plebiscite.

  • Listen to Phelps’ speech (27m)
  • Watch Phelps’ speech (30m)
  • Watch Phelps’ swearing-in (6m)
  • ?

    Hansard transcript of the first speech by Dr Kerryn Phelps, independent member for Wentworth.

    Mr CHESTER (Gippsland—Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Minister for Defence Personnel, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC and Deputy Leader of the House) (15:12): by leave—I move:

    That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the Member for Wentworth making a statement immediately and that the Member speak without limitation of time.

    Question agreed to.

    The SPEAKER: Before I call the honourable member for Wentworth, I remind the House that this is the honourable member’s first speech. I ask the House to extend to her the usual courtesies. [Read more…]


Daniel Andrews Claims Victory As Labor Wins Landslide Re-Election In Victoria

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has claimed victory in the state election that as delivered a landslide win to the Labor Party.

The ALP appears to have won up to 8 seats from the coalition and looks likely to hold 55 seats in the 88-seat Legislative Assembly, a victory equal to the Bracks majority in 2006.

Andrews’ 2014 victory gave the ALP 47 seats, an absolute majority of six. It now looks set to govern with a majority of 22.

The government’s two-party-preferred vote is like to be around 57%, exceeding the 54.39% vote achieved by Bracks in 2006.

This is the speech Andrews delivered to supporters in Melbourne.

Watch Andrews (13m):

Listen to Andrews (13m)